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Herper of the week

Herper of the Week: Annette Evans

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Each week a “Herper” of the Week is chosen. These individuals come from all sorts of backgrounds but they all have one common interest – “herps” (reptiles and amphibians). Hopefully, you will learn about them and their important work.

This week’s Herper is Annette Evans, Ph.D candidate at the University of Connecticut. Her research focuses on the evolutionary responses of the Red-backed Salamander (Plethodon cinereus) to climate change.

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Frogs of the World

Amazon Milk Frog (Trachycephalus resinifictrix)

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photo by D. Gordon E. Robertson

leastconcern
Common Name: Amazon Milk Frog or Mission Golden-eyed Tree Frog<
Scientific Name: Trachycephalus resinifictrix
Family: Hylidae
Location: Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Peru, Suriname,  and Venezuela
Max Size: 3.5 inches for females, 3 inches for males

The Amazon Milk Frog is a fairly large species of tree frog found in South America. They are commonly found in the pet trade now. They are named the “Milk” frogs because they release a milky secretion when threatened by a predator. For breeding, the Amazon Milk Frog lays their eggs in hollow trees that hatch the very next day.

Other Amphibian of the Week

Tennessee Cave Salamander (Gyrinophilus palleucus)

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photo by wikiuser Sesamehoneytart

vulnerable
Common Name: Tennessee Cave Salamander
Scientific Name: Gyrinophilus palleucus
Family: Plethodontidae
Location: Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee
Size: 9 inches

The Tennessee Cave Salamander is a neotenic salamander found in caves in the southern Appalachian Mountains. It is the official amphibian of the state of Tennessee. There are two subspecies, the Pale Salamander (G. p. palleucus)and the Big Mouth Cave Salamander (G. p. necturoides). The Big Mouth Cave Salamander is darker and more heavily spotter than the Pale Salamander. Not much is really known about the life history of the salamander because of its secretive lifestyle and we may never know. Populations of the Tennessee Cave Salamander are declining because of pollution from mining, agriculture, and urbanization.

Herper of the week

Herper of the Week: Dr. Richard Shine

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Each week a “Herper” of the Week is chosen. These individuals come from all sorts of backgrounds but they all have one common interest – “herps” (reptiles and amphibians). Hopefully, you will learn about them and their important work.

This week’s Herper is Dr. Richard Shine, Professor of Biology at the University of Sydney, president of the Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles (SSAR), and Laureate Fellow of the Australian Research Council.

Dr Shine’s research focuses on the evolution and ecology of reptiles and lizards but his research has shifted more towards conservation especially control of invasive species such as the Cane Toad. To learn more about his research, visit his lab’s website.

Other Amphibian of the Week

Eastern Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum)

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leastconcern
Common Name: Eastern Tiger Salamander
Scientific Name: Ambystoma tigrinum
Family:  Ambystomatidae
Location: United States, Canada, and Mexico
US Locations: Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin
Size: around 8 inches

The Eastern Tiger Salamander is the most widespread salamander in North America, found from southern Canada down to northern Mexico, but it is hardly seen. The Tiger Salamander usually spends most of its life underground in burrows. The best options to see a wild one is either during / after rain or when they are breeding in water bodies. There are some Eastern Tiger Salamanders that are fully aquatic and neotenic, meaning they kept their larval features such as gills.

 

Frog of the Week

Common Toad (Bufo bufo)

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photo from https://www.sharpphotography.co.uk/

leastconcern
Common Name: Common Toad
Scientific Name: Bufo bufo
Family: Bufonidae
Location: Europe
Size: 6 inches

The Common Toad is found almost everywhere in Europe besides on some islands such as Iceland and Ireland. The Common Toad is kind of your standard toad. They are highly terrestrial besides during breeding season where they migrate to ponds to breed. Breeding usually takes place in spring when the toads wake up from hibernation.

Frog or Toad

Frog or Toad 5/8/18

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Can you tell if this is a frog or a toad? Try to make a guess below! If you need some tips read this. Also if you want to know what exactly are the differences between frogs and toads, read this! Answer will be posted tomorrow!

Herper of the week

Herper of the Week: Mary Kate O’Donnell

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Each week a “Herper” of the Week is chosen. These individuals come from all sorts of backgrounds but they all have one common interest – “herps” (reptiles and amphibians). Hopefully, you will learn about them and their important work.

The Herper of the Week is Mary Kate O’Donnell, Ph.D candidate at Deban Lab at the University of South Florida. Her Ph.D is focusing on variations in climbing in salamanders in the family Plethodontidae – the Lungless Salamanders.

You can visit her website – https://marykateodonnell.wordpress.com to learn more.

Other Amphibian of the Week

Greater Siren (Siren lacertina)


leastconcern

Common Name: Greater Siren
Scientific Name: Siren lacertina
Family: Sirenidae
Location: United State – Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia
Size: 3.2 feet or 98 cm

The Greater Siren (and all Sirens) is found in the Southeastern United States. It is the largest of all the sirens, with some reaching over 3 feet long. Just like all sirens, they lack hind legs but they still retain their gills into adulthood. Not much is known about the biology of the Greater Siren because of their secretive nature as they hide in burrows during the day and are slightly more active during the night.